News: Artist to Schlep Mammoth Chunk of Ice from Greenland to NYC

Artist to Schlep Mammoth Chunk of Ice from Greenland to NYC

It's an ambitious How-To project to say the least, or more specifically, an over-the-top political art installation by San Francisco artist Brian Goggin. You may have previously heard of Goggin for his "Defenestration" project—an installation of "frozen" furniture, being tossed mid-air from a San Francisco apartment building. But Goggin's latest project sounds significantly more challenging to execute, considering the elaborate game plan involved:

Artist to Schlep Mammoth Chunk of Ice from Greenland to NYC

  1. Travel via husky driven sled to a site in Greenland to retrieve an "enormous monolith" of 100,000 year-old rare blue basal ice.
  2. Once the "ice cube" is extracted, enlist huskies, human "tuggers" and possibly musk oxen to haul the monolith to Greenland's coastal town of Ilulissat. *Note: There is also a chance the team will use an enormous sail kite to aid in the towing process.
  3. Transfer the block of ice to NYC bound ship.
  4. Once the block arrives in NYC, Goggin will work his magic. The artist plans to use ancient Egyptian-inspired tools and techniques to shape the ice into a volume the same proportion as the foundation stones of the Great Pyramid of Giza. It will be preserved in a custom-designed reliquary filled with sub-zero glycol solution to keep the ice frozen, weighing in at a grand total of 4000 pounds!
  5. If all goes according to plan, the preserved ice will travel to different exhibitions across the country. After its run, it will be installed in once place permanently, with the hope it will be preserved for exactly 488 years—a number chosen because 488 years ago, the island of Manhattan was discovered by Captain Giovanni da Verrazzano of the French ship La Dauphine.

So why such an elaborate spectacle... and what's the political significance?

Goggin hopes the public will see the massive block (as well as it's planned longevity) as a symbol for the drastic changes in the natural environment over the last few centuries. As for the project's grandeur, Goggin sees it as "a kind of mythological quest for the Holy Grail... a post-fuel interaction not using motors or any heavy carbon-producing systems—a stupendous human effort."

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